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Author Topic: Portable PA active speakers  (Read 15019 times)

Marcus Howell

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Portable PA active speakers
« on: January 12, 2011, 02:54:21 pm »

Hi

This is my first post her so hi to you all.

We are a small but growing church in the Midlands UK. We meet in a school hall, and the PA is slowly getting more sophisticated, as budget allows. However, we occasionally have a small teaching type service etc. in a local village hall. These venues are so small that there is hardly any need for  sound re-enforcement. But occasionally we need to do a DVD presentation  or the pastor has a sore throat and doesn't want to shout.

Can anyone recommend a pair of small and cheap professional speakers? I have a budget of
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Dick Rees

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Re: Portable PA active speakers
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2011, 11:14:07 am »

Marcus....

While not technically "PA" speakers, the Wharfdale Diamond 8.1 or 8.2 studio monitor speakers are very affordable and usable for your stated purpose.  The only thing you'll need to do is devise a way to deploy them as they do not have any mounting hardware but are meant to be table or shelf mounted.  I'd suggest simply making a small shelf-like platform to which you can attach a generic stand-mount bracket.  A bit of a raised edge all the way 'round and you're in business.  You could also make a hole in the platform through which the power and line cables could pass.

These little boxes are very good sounding and have both XLR and RCA connectors, so if you want to use them with a DVD player or laptop for power-point you needn't really use a mixer, just the proper RCA cable.  This lowers the bar for the casual users to the home stereo level.....not a bad deal.  They are also "near field" speakers and as such have a nice wide pattern and will not take the heads off of folks sitting in close proximity.

Good luck.

Lastly, they are made in the UK, so no big deal on VAT or other add-on charges.
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Marcus Howell

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Re: Portable PA active speakers
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2011, 02:01:40 pm »

Dick

Many thanks for your reply and consideration.

I had not come across these before and they cetainly get some good write ups and they come in at
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Andrew Cupples

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Re: Portable PA active speakers
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2011, 03:27:42 pm »

Hi Marcus,
You could consider using a single speaker, if it's only for vocal reinforcement, and occasional recorded music. Something like a Mackie SRM 350 for example, would be within your budget. Our local Cash Convertors is selling one for
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Dick Rees

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Re: Portable PA active speakers
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2011, 03:31:50 pm »

There are no speakers made which will not suffer from transport without some kind of protection, either padded bags or road cases.  I simply use the boxes they came in complete with the styrofoam spacers.  If you want the cardboard boxes to last longer you can simply reinforce the corners with gaff tape all the way 'round.  I even cut some holes in mine for handles. The boxes, not the speakers.

For the money they're very , very hard to beat.
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Marcus Howell

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Re: Portable PA active speakers
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2011, 04:19:17 pm »

Dick

Good point. Certainly answered my issue

Andrew

Those Mackie are lovely but are getting a bit large. These are for the odd Alpha course or Marriage course our Church does on occasions usually at a village hall or community centre. The spec says they are nearly half a metre tall.

And are not handled by the most technically competent.

I am warming to the wharfies cos if push comes to shove I could actually use them as monitors, as well, especially if we try a bit of recording.

I am in no hurry. Don't want to blow the years budget half way through January!!
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Tom Young

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Re: Portable PA active speakers
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2011, 06:50:22 pm »

Quote:

I am warming to the wharfies cos if push comes to shove I could actually use them as monitors, as well, especially if we try a bit of recording.


It's been a few years, but when I demoed a couple of different Wharfdale speakers they clearly were quite substandard in their design and build quality. The price reflected this.

You are at the threshold of what many people face: the decision to buy what you can afford now and probably end up with something that does not do a decent job and has zero long-term value *or* you can wait until additional funds become available and buy something that will last a long time, perform very well and (as you or your needs grow) perhaps be used elsewhere with good results.

The concept that any PA speaker can be used as a recording monitor is very uninformed. These are completey different applications and consist of completely different design criteria and are used under completely unrelated acoustic conditions.
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Tom Young, Church Sound section moderator
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Dick Rees

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Re: Portable PA active speakers
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2011, 07:58:20 pm »

Tom...

If you read the post to which the OP was referring you'll see that I was recommending the Wharfdale studio monitors for his use.  I have not had a lot of experience with their PA stuff, but the little studio monitors are very usable, built well and sound good for his use.  I have used them extensively in this application and find them to be good performers and a very economical solution for those who need simple voice reinforcement, laptop/DVD/CD enhancement and the ability to connect with either XLR or RCA.  As such they are easily usable by the less experienced folks.

You cannot and should not ever try to use them for PA speakers, though.  The OP's characterization of his needs as "PA speakers" is an unfortunate misnomer.  Looking at his use I would not hesitate to save the money and simply use near field monitors.

DR
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